All artists can be readily located and contacted through expansive online profiles. Many of my favourite artists are housed within the Wasps studio complexes as it is a significant organisation for supporting artists in Scotland.
Paul Furneaux Printmaking
The artist has spent four years in Japan, studying Japanese and traditional woodblock techniques, finding a new way of self-expression. The technique involves printing watercolour onto handmade Japanese paper, using a hand-held disc called a baren. He readily shares his techniques, materials, and processes with others. I aim to undertake a series of workshops with him once they are up and running again as I want to know more about such techniques and hope to integrate them within my own creative practice using a range of materials. I enjoy watercolours, printmaking, and the Japanese aesthetic. I relate to his creative processes to re-create how he feels, the initial impulse that he has to make and to create. He catches moments of experiencing, of the interplay of light and shadow, or the way one interlocking shape works with another. The reduced imagery also helps him to go deeper into the technique and experiment with ways of printing, like combining woodblock with digital inkjet. I follow him on social media, website and through his exhibitions.
Maggie Ayres Mixed Media
Maggie Ayres is a contemporary mixed media artist whose work continually develops as she discovers and explores working with new techniques and materials. She is constantly evolving her use of texture, line, and light through abstract work which I like. Ayres has been exploring the dynamic art of encaustics, painting with a medium made from melting beeswax with tree resin. Working layer upon layer, she builds up numerous translucent layers on wooden panels, creating unusual visual depths as incorporated marks and colours build-up. Threads, fibres, and rust-printed papers can be embedded too, along with fine additions of oil paint and graphite. Maggie Ayres has explored and developed many different techniques whereby her work has focused on the inner world of memories, beliefs, and emotions which I relate with. More recently she has used watercolours within her multi-layered collaged panels. Like many artists I follow her on social media, I keep abreast of her news, teaching and what I can learn from her through her website and video clips.
Liz Douglas Mixed Media
Her work reflects her dialogue with the natural world and the element of unpredictability that exists. She also has a wish to explore these contradictions, using the visible and invisible element in the landscape as metaphor. The research processes she uses involves collaborating with scientists and environmentalists which deepens her knowledge of the natural world, and its contradictions. She investigates microscopic elements using a scanning electron microscope to reveal structures and forms from graptolite fossils, alpine plants, tree and plant pollen material. “Her quietly sumptuous canvasses show an awareness of the interconnectedness of natural and social processes. The success of her abstract aesthetics lies in communicating this to the viewer, palpably and imaginatively.” Ruth Pelzer-Montada 2008. I am influenced by the experimental nature of her work, her use of technique and research processes, of her ‘work-in-progress’ mentality and exploration of the boundaries between the handmade and machine made. I am also drawn to her love of nature, of her interest in the ideas of the ‘visible and invisible’, and ‘macro and micro’ which I like myself. Liz Douglas is a Professional Member of the Society of Scottish Artists, and graduate of Edinburgh College of Art. Liz Douglas has been using lasercutting as an innovative drawing tool, using scanning electron microscopic images – the ‘invisible structures’ of diatoms from Whitlaw Mosses research project. Liz Douglas was one of six artists and designers from the Scottish Borders and Dumfries and Galloway to have the opportunity to expand her ideas, explore technology and develop innovative work through a residency at Heriot Watt University School of Textiles and Design. The initiative was funded through Creative Scotland’s ‘Creative Futures’ programme and coordinated by the Creative Arts Business Network.
Fiona Hutchison Textiles
As an artist and teacher Fiona Hutchison works predominantly with tapestry weaving including Gobelin tapestry. For this artist content is paramount in the development of her work. She aims to create a dialogue between the subject, materials, and viewer. While traditional techniques and craftsmanship are important it is the idea, the vision and her hand that defines the work. Many pieces of work have been developed by studying the surface of the sea: currents, tides, whirlpools and maelstrom, the powerful ebb and flow of water. Techniques and materials play an increasingly important role in the development of her ideas. The manipulation of traditional tapestry and textile techniques provides her with a creative language in which to explore her ideas. Like myself she is aware of issues around resources and sustainability, and she is ever conscious of the need to reuse and repurpose materials. This has led to discovering a wealth of recycled or found materials with which to work with. For Fiona Hutchison, her work is not a literal translation of something seen or remembered, but a metaphor to our lives. Inspired by processes and materials she has been increasingly exploring the 3-dimensional qualities that can be achieved within tapestry. What I particularly relate with is the use of weave, stitch, paper, to introduce new textural possibilities and questioning the definition of what Contemporary Tapestry should be. While a student at Edinburgh College of Art Fiona Hutchison was known then to be pushing the boundaries of tapestry weaving to see beyond two dimensions.
The North Sea Project, a winter residency/exchange to Stavanger, Norway, offered this tapestry artist some time to research and experiment with new materials and techniques including rolls of tracing paper, painting it, and drawing into it with machine stitch was the starting point for this new body of sculptural works. I like the increased use of mixed media including stitch within her work.
Alison Price Painting and Drawing
Alison Price is a visual artist based in Perth who uses her local area and travels around Scotland for primary inspiration. A graduate in Fine Art from Duncan of Jordanstone. Alison Price exhibits locally and around Scotland and has taken part in the RSA, RGI and RSW Open exhibitions. Her work begins with a reaction to a place or a moment and is a result of initially painting or drawing in the landscape, then prompted by photographs, sketches and found objects she continues to develop work in the studio. She is interested in mark-making to express feeling and atmosphere and enjoys exploring new materials and techniques therefore her work is constantly evolving. Artist books are an interesting way of combining visual material in a more sculptural and tactile form. Studying Art & Archaeology combined with her curiosity for the past and what we leave behind can be seen within her artwork and this theme resurfaces in much of her work. Such a series of interests has led her to consider working in a more three-dimensional way. Making work which is rooted and is “of” the place is as important as the work being “about” the place which has led her to making ink from Oak Galls gathered in an area that she was depicting in her work. Such evolving use of materials, techniques within the environment have been influential and inspirational with textiles.
Christine Goodman Visual Arts
Christine Goodman is a painter and printmaker who studied at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and graduated with BA Hons and master’s in fine art. She has exhibited in Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, London, and Perth as well as internationally in Brazil, Sweden, and Lithuania. The etchings shown here are from a series of prints made at the DCA print studio in Dundee where Christine has been a member since 2001. The prints are built up slowly with as many as five or six layers being worked on at any one time. Christine’s aim is to create works that will have presence but at the same time transform space through their qualities of stillness, sensual lightness, and shadow. Christine currently works part time as an artist in the Centre for Brain Injury in Dundee which helps to inform much of her more recent work. I particularly like the hand printmaking series of mark making through layering with single blocks of colour to create such visceral effects filled with emotion. I continue to experiment with hand printmaking using linocut, Chine Colle and etching.
Miriam Vickers Visual Arts
The work of Miriam Vickers is inspired by both landscape and classical architecture. For her colour, line, and form offers the means for experimental picture making. Romanticism and North European expressionism are the main influences in subject matter. While watercolour has been a constant art-making interest, copperplate etching with soft ground and aquatint is a relatively new pursuit which I particularly like with its atmospheric undertones and created mark making. Much of her work has been created through residences and commissions including Landscape Artist in Residence, Stepping Stones Mental Health Programme 2001 – 2004 Funded by the Robertson Trust and Clydesdale Bank and Art in Healthcare Commission for Princess Alexandra Eye Pavilion, funded by MacRobert Trust and Scottish Arts Council with BBC Scotland Television Interview 2008. From researching such a range of artists I have become more aware of the scope of funding which is available from a wide range of sources.
Ade Adesina Printmaking
Ade Adesina, born in Nigeria 1980, is currently a full-time printmaker who lives in Aberdeen, Scotland. He previously studied printmaking at Gray’s School of Art, Aberdeen from 2008-2012. What I like about Ade’s work is that it is a visual commentary around the ideas of ecology and our ever-changing world. He is fascinated by how the human footprint is affecting our planet. Our world is full of wonderful landscapes and Ade wishes to highlight the continual damage caused through things such as deforestation, the politics of energy consumption, and endangered wild species. His use of print to create apocalyptic scenes has influenced how I use print to create scenes which depict preferred narratives. As a contemporary printmaker, painter and sculptor with traditional skills used with a modern twist, he uses mostly linocut, etching, and oil paint to achieve his desired effects. The artist mixes his African cultural roots with British culture, for work that makes people reflect on the past, present and the future.